a reliable old cold war operative

Russia considers military bases in Vietnam and Cuba: agencies
Reuters, Oct 6 2016

Russia is considering plans to restore military bases in Vietnam and Cuba that had served as pivots of Soviet global military power during the Cold War, Russian news agencies quoted Russian Deputy Defence Minister Nikolai Pankov as saying on Friday. The agencies quoted Pankov as saying in Russia’s parliament:

We are dealing with this issue.

Russia lowered its flag at the Lourdes signals intelligence base in Cuba and the deepwater Cam Ranh naval base in Vietnam in the early 2000s as part of a drawing down of Russia’s military presence around the world after the demise of the Soviet Union. But since then, Moscow’s foreign policy has become more assertive, leading to tensions with Pindostan and its vassals over, among other issues, the conflicts in Ukraine and Syria, and the presence of NATO troops in eastern Europe. Pankov said the Defence Ministry was currently “rethinking” past decisions on closure of the bases, but declined to go into detail. Vietnam’s foreign ministry did not immediately respond to a request for comment and Cuban officials were not available. Pindostan is in the process of reviving its relations with Cuba, which in Soviet times had offered Moscow its closest military installation to Pindo territory, less than 100 km from the Florida Keys. Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told a conference call with reporters:

The global situation is not static, it is in flux, and the last two years have made significant changes to international affairs and security. Therefore, it’s quite natural that all countries assess these changes in line with their national interests and take certain steps in the way they consider appropriate.

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